A Poem I Like #5


A Poem I Like #5

Composition Notebook by Jacqueline Woodson
Hard not to smile as I held it, felt the
breeze as I fanned the pages. My sister thought my standing there
smiling was crazy didn't understand how the smell and feel and sight of
bright white paper could bring me so much joy.

And why does she need a notebook? She can't even write!

For days and days, I could only sniff the pages, hold the notebook close
listen to the sound the papers made

Nothing in the world is like this-- a bright white page with pale blue
lines. The smell of newly sharpened pencil the soft hush of it moving
finally one day into letters.

And even though she's smarter than anything, this is something my sister
can't even begin to understand. "

~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Here Woodson writes about an experience all her one--one she knows that
will resonate with as souls as it shall also seem opaque to. She details
her experience in vivid imagery while almost celebrating the fact that
her experience would not be understood by some. Poetry demands that. I
am convinced that the greatest stories and the best poems must all
reflect truth, and genuine truth does not care for acceptance. Artists
who love art intrinsically understand this pursuit to capture some of
truth in their work. Approval is a persistent temptation that lures
creativity into false performance. It is because of this persistent
temptation that artist have to be vigilant and crystal clear in their
pursuit. One might ask: what's wrong with embracing a little attention?
To that I'll say, maybe nothing if your values allow; however, for me
such an embrace is a departure from the pursuit of truth. And the
further we stray from unabashed truth, the more impossible it will be to
capture real beauty. \]
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